Medical News Summary: Pregnancy diet could increase the risk of cancer in offspring


About: Pregnancy diet could increase the risk of cancer in offspring
Date: 27 December 2004
Source: Red Nova
Medical News Summary (summary of medical news story as reported by Red Nova): Previous research has linked alcohol, smoking during pregnancy to mental and physical development problems and low birth weight to heart disease in adulthood. New research is suggesting a link between birth weight and the risk of breast cancer, prostate cancer and testicular cancer during adulthood. Babies over 8.8 pounds at birth (or over the 90th percentile weight for their gestational week) face a greater risk of these cancers. Increased birth weight is also linked to a greater risk of acute myeloid leukemia in babies to young adults. Animal studies link high fat diet of mothers during pregnancy to increased risk of breast cancer in their female children. Thus, it is important that women donít gain more than the recommended 15 to 25 pounds during their pregnancy and they should maintain a healthy diet during the entire pregnancy. The reason for the increased risk of cancer could be due to the fact that larger babies have more cells that could potentially mutate or a motherís large weight gain could expose the fetus to extra growth hormones at a time when cells are already dividing very quickly.
Related Disease Topics: Cancer, Smoking, Alcoholism, Pregnancy, Mental development problems, Physical development problems, Low birth weight (see Pregnancy symptoms), Heart disease, Breast cancer, Prostate cancer, Testicular cancer, High birth weight, Acute myeloid leukemia

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